How a Lack of Exercise Can Lead to Heart Health Issues for Women

heart health

Exercise in women is vital to avoiding heart disease.

Did you know that heart health is one of the most important factors in lifestyle choices?
Cardiovascular disease is one of the main causes of death in women in the United States! Around 400,000 women die yearly from heart disease which is just as high as the mortality rate for cancer, respiratory disease, and diabetes combined. These results are scary but the good news is that improving heart health is fairly easy, if certain lifestyle habits are adopted. Today we’re going to focus on heart health and cardiovascular exercise and why improving heart health is important for all women.

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Cardiovascular Exercise is Important for Heart Health

Heart disease is one of the main causes of death in women around the country. By increasing exercise in women the better the heart meaning a decrease in the risk of cardiovascular disease. What this means is that women should be doing around an hour and a half, minimum, of moderate exercise in a week. That can be substituted for less time if it is vigorous, intense activity, for example, HITT or Cardio and Strength training.

It’s also important that healthcare providers encourage their patients to pursue improving heart health to diminish the risk of heart disease. Especially focusing on those who are at higher risk such as women of certain ethnicities, lower socioeconomic status, and older women. This encouragement can also be given through tips that enable patients to find physical activities more enjoyable or easier to do.

Improving Heart Health through Cardiovascular Exercise

Exercise is one of the easiest was to not only strengthen the heart but keep excess weight off and maintain heart health. There are certain types of exercise that are better for the body than other and two of the most important types of exercise are aerobic exercise and resistance training.  Improving flexibility is also important to ensure that aerobic exercise and resistance training can be performed effectively without hurting the body.

Here are some examples of different types of cardiovascular exercise:

Aerobic Exercise – This type of moderate activity makes the heart pump and is what doctors recommend doing for around 2.5 hours a week.

  • Brisk walking
  • Running
  • Swimming
  • Cycling
  • Playing tennis
  • Jumping rope

Resistance Training – This type of activity is more intense and can help reduce fat as well as help muscle mass. This type of training can be done less often during the week because it is more intense.

  • Working out with free weights
  • HITT
  • Zumba
  • Boot Camp
  • Using weight machines
  • Using resistance bands
  • Completing body – resistance exercises
  • Push-ups
  • Squats
  • Chin- Ups

Flexibility – Flexibility benefits the musculoskeletal health allowing individuals to avoid joint pain, cramping, and other muscular issues. This is important in order to maintain the types of exercise listed above.

  • Tai chi
  • Yoga
  • Pilates
  • Everyday stretches
  • Watching videos online for stretching
  • Speaking to your doctor about what’s best for your body

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No matter what type of exercise you decide to do to improve your heart health and lower the risk of heart disease, it’s important that you keep up the routine and enjoy doing so. If you are able to join a gym, do so and make sure the classes they offer to appeal to you. You can easily get in the recommended activity in a week while visiting the gym 2 – 3 days a week. If you are unable to join a gym but have access to the internet, the internet is full of guides, tutorials, and videos that can allow you to work out at home and to the best of your ability. Using online resources is a great place to start if you are someone who is unfamiliar with working out. When all else fails, going for a walk is a great way to get your heart pumping.

Before making major changes to your routine, speak to your doctor about which types of exercises are best for you and follow their recommendations.


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